Fleming, a Democrat whose county district encompasses Southampton, East Hampton and Shelter Island, was the first to enter the race, declaring more than a year ago her campaign to succeed U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin, who is running for governor. She and her family live in Noyack.
LaLota, a Republican, declared months ago that he would run in the First, but the district’s boundaries changed a number of times as political parties fought in court about redistricting. The lines were finalized Friday. LaLota and his family live in Amityville, which is not in the First District, but members of Congress are not required to live in the districts they represent.
The redistricting fight led to candidates, over several days, jumping in or out of races as the district lines moved. Huntington, currently in the Third District, briefly was assigned to the 2nd before settling into the First with the last court ruling. The First now stretches from the Nassau border to the East End, including all of Huntington, while Babylon,Islip and other communities a part of the 2nd.
Fleming is a former Southampton town councilwoman who previously worked as an assistant district attorney in Manhattan, where she served in the sex crimes prosecution unit. She also handled pro bono cases at the New York City Bar Association. She also trained volunteer lawyers to help the families of victims of the Sept. 11 attack.
She graduated from Hunter College and received her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law,
LaLota is a Navy veteran, having graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and served overseas on multiple missions. He was named to the Amityville Board of Trustees in 2013 and was elected in 2014 and re-elected in 2015. He also served as a commissioner of the Suffolk County Board of Elections.
He graduated from Hofstra University’s Zarb School of Business with a Masters Degree in Business Administration. and has a Juris Doctor from Hofstra University’s Maurice A. Dean School of Law.
Abortion rights, election integrity, budgets, and gun violence are a few of the topics expected to be debated during the campaign.
For Huntington, the winner of the November election will become the town’s newest representative, succeeding US Rep. Tom Suozzi, who is running for governor.